The Department of Transportation’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) is to examine the FAA’s Runway Safety Program in the light of a steadily increasing number of runway incursions and evaluate the agency’s progress in implementing initiatives to prevent further incursions.
Prevention of runway incursions and ground collisions has been on the NTSB’s “Most Wanted Transportation Safety Improvements List” since 1990.
“The number of serious runway incursions has tripled over the past three years from six to 18, while total runway incursions also rose from 954 to 1,150 in that same period,” said the OIG in its initial report. “More concerning is that this increase occurred during a period when total air traffic operations declined slightly. In addition, the FAA has recently reorganized its Runway Safety Office, and has changed the way that the agency reports and evaluates runway incursions.”
The audit is scheduled to begin this week.